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Guglielmo Marconi

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Title: Guglielmo Marconi  
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Guglielmo Marconi

Guglielmo Marconi
Born Guglielmo Giovanni Maria Marconi
(1874-04-25)25 April 1874
Palazzo Marescalchi, Bologna, Italy
Died 20 July 1937(1937-07-20) (aged 63)
Rome, Italy
Residence Italy
Nationality Italian
Alma mater University of Bologna
Academic advisors Augusto Righi
Known for Radio
Notable awards Nobel Prize for Physics (1909)
Albert Medal (1914)
Franklin Medal (1918)
IEEE Medal of Honor (1920)
John Fritz Medal (1923)

Guglielmo Marconi, 1st Marquis of Marconi (Italian: ; 25 April 1874 – 20 July 1937) was an Italian inventor and electrical engineer, known for his pioneering work on long-distance radio transmission[1] and for his development of Marconi's law and a radio telegraph system. He is often credited as the inventor of radio, and he shared the 1909 Nobel Prize in Physics with Karl Ferdinand Braun "in recognition of their contributions to the development of wireless telegraphy".[2][3][4] An entrepreneur, businessman, and founder in Britain in 1897 of The Wireless Telegraph & Signal Company (which became the Marconi Company), Marconi succeeded in making a commercial success of radio by innovating and building on the work of previous experimenters and physicists.[5][6] In 1929 the King of Italy ennobled Marconi as a Marchese (marquis).


  • Biography 1
    • Early years 1.1
    • Radio work 1.2
      • Early experimental devices 1.2.1
      • Transatlantic transmissions 1.2.2
      • Titanic 1.2.3
      • Continuing work 1.2.4
    • Later years 1.3
  • Personal life 2
  • Legacy and honours 3
    • Honours and awards 3.1
    • Tributes 3.2
    • Places and organizations named after Marconi 3.3
      • Asia 3.3.1
        • Hong Kong
      • Europe 3.3.2
        • Ireland
        • Italy
        • Luxembourg
        • Netherlands
        • Sweden
        • United Kingdom
      • Middle East 3.3.3
        • Israel
      • Oceania 3.3.4
        • Australia
      • North America 3.3.5
        • Canada
        • Mexico
        • United States
          • California
          • Hawaii
          • Massachusetts
          • Missouri
          • New Jersey
          • New York
          • Ohio
          • Pennsylvania
          • Rhode Island
      • South America 3.3.6
        • Argentine
  • Patents 4
    • British patents 4.1
    • US patents 4.2
    • Reissued (US) 4.3
  • See also 5
  • Notes 6
  • Further reading 7
  • External links 8


Early years

Marconi was born into the Italian nobility as Guglielmo Giovanni Maria Marconi[7] in Bologna on 25 April 1874, the second son of Giuseppe Marconi (an Italian aristocratic landowner from Porretta Terme) and of his Irish/Scots wife, Annie Jameson (daughter of Andrew Jameson of Daphne Castle in County Wexford, Ireland and granddaughter of John Jameson, founder of whiskey distillers Jameson & Sons.[8]) Marconi received his early education privately in Bologna in the lab of Augusto Righi, in Florence at the Istituto Cavallero and, later, in Livorno, spending two years at Bedford School[9] in England during his peripatetic childhood. As a child Marconi, according to Robert McHenry, did not do well in school,[10] though historian Corradi Giuliano in his biography characterizes Marconi as a true genius.[11] Baptized as a Catholic, he was also a member of the Anglican Church, being married into it; however, he received a Catholic annulment.

Radio work

During his early years, Marconi had an interest in science and electricity. One of the scientific developments during this era came from Heinrich Hertz, who, beginning in 1888, demonstrated that one could produce and detect electromagnetic radiation—now generally known as radio waves, at the time more commonly called "Hertzian waves" or "aetheric waves". Hertz's death in 1894 brought published reviews of his earlier discoveries, and a renewed interest on the part of Marconi. He was permitted to briefly study the subject under Augusto Righi, a University of Bologna physicist and neighbour of Marconi who had done research on Hertz's work.

Early experimental devices

Marconi Rock, Salvan, Switzerland, site of 1895 experiments

Marconi began to conduct experiments, building much of his own equipment in the attic of his home at the Villa Griffone in Pontecchio, Italy, with the help of his butler Mignani. His goal was to use radio waves to create a practical system of "wireless telegraphy"—i.e. the transmission of telegraph messages without connecting wires as used by the electric telegraph. This was not a new idea—numerous investigators had been exploring wireless telegraph technologies for over 50 years, but none had proven technically and commercially successful. Marconi's system had the following components:[12]

  • A relatively simple oscillator, or spark-producing radio transmitter.
  • A wire or capacity area placed at a height above the ground;
  • A coherer receiver, which was a modification of Edouard Branly's original device, with refinements to increase sensitivity and reliability;
  • A telegraph key to operate the transmitter to send short and long pulses, corresponding to the dots-and-dashes of Morse code; and
  • A telegraph register, activated by the coherer, which recorded the received Morse code dots and dashes onto a roll of paper tape.

Similar configurations using spark-gap transmitters plus coherer-receivers had been tried by others, but many were unable to achieve transmission ranges of more than a few hundred metres.

Marconi, just twenty years old, began his first experiments working on his own with the help of his butler Mignani. In the summer of 1894, he built a storm alarm made up of a battery, a coherer, and an electric bell, which went off if there was lightning. Soon after he was able to make a bell ring on the other side of the room by pushing a telegraphic button on a bench.[13]

One night in December, Guglielmo woke his mother up and invited her into his secret workshop and showed her the experiment he had created. The next day he also showed his work to his father, who, when he was certain there were no wires, gave his son all of the money he had in his wallet so Guglielmo could buy more materials.

In the summer of 1895 Marconi moved his experimentation outdoors and continued to experiment on his father's estate in Bologna. After increasing the length of the transmitter and receiver antennas, arranging them vertically, and positioning the antenna so that it touched the ground, the range increased significantly.[14] Soon he was able to transmit signals over a hill, a distance of approximately 2.4 kilometres (1.5 mi).[15] By this point he concluded that with additional funding and research, a device could become capable of spanning greater distances and would prove valuable both commercially and militarily.

Marconi wrote to the Ministry of Post and Telegraphs, then under the direction of the honorable Pietro Lacava, explaining his wireless telegraph machine and asking for funding. He never received a response to his letter which was eventually dismissed by the Minister who wrote "to the Longara" on the document, referring to the insane asylum on Via della Lungara in Rome.[16]

In 1896, Marconi spoke with his family friend Carlo Gardini,Honorary Consul at the United States Consulate in Bologna, about leaving Italy to go to England. Gardini wrote a letter of introduction to the Ambassador of Italy in London, Annibale Ferrero, explaining who Marconi was and about these extraordinary discoveries. In his response, Ambassador Ferrero advised them not to reveal the results until after they had obtained the copyrights. He also encouraged him to come to England where he believed it would be easier to find the necessary funds to convert the findings from Marconi's experiment into a practical use. Finding little interest or appreciation for his work in Italy, Marconi travelled to London in early 1896 at the age of 21, accompanied by his mother, to seek support for his work; Marconi spoke fluent English in addition to Italian. Marconi arrived at Dover and at Customs the Customs officer opened his case to find various contraptions and apparatus. The customs officer immediately contacted the Admiralty in London. While there, Marconi gained the interest and support of William Preece, the Chief Electrical Engineer of the British Post Office.

The apparatus that Marconi possessed at that time was similar to that of one in 1882 by A. E. Dolbear, of Tufts College, which used a spark coil generator and a carbon granular rectifier for reception.[17] A plaque[18] on the outside of BT Centre commemorates Marconi's first public transmission of wireless signals from that site.[19] A series of demonstrations for the British government followed—by March 1897, Marconi had transmitted Morse code signals over a distance of about 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) across Salisbury Plain. On 13 May 1897, Marconi sent the world's first ever wireless communication over open sea. The experiment, based in Wales, witnessed a message transversed over the Bristol Channel from Flat Holm Island to Lavernock Point in Penarth, a distance of 6 kilometres (3.7 mi). The message read "Are you ready".[20] The transmitting equipment was almost immediately relocated to Brean Down Fort on the Somerset coast, stretching the range to 16 kilometres (9.9 mi).

Plaque on the outside of BT Centre commemorates Marconi's first public transmission of wireless signals.

Impressed by these and other demonstrations, Preece introduced Marconi's ongoing work to the general public at two important London lectures: "Telegraphy without Wires", at the Toynbee Hall on 11 December 1896; and "Signaling through Space without Wires", given to the Royal Institution on 4 June 1897.

Numerous additional demonstrations followed, and Marconi began to receive international attention. In July 1897, he carried out a series of tests at La Spezia, in his home country, for the Italian government. A test for Lloyds between Ballycastle and Rathlin Island, Ireland, was conducted on 6 July 1898. The English channel was crossed on 27 March 1899, from Wimereux, France to South Foreland Lighthouse, England, and in the autumn of 1899, the first demonstrations in the United States took place, with the reporting of the America's Cup international yacht races at New York.

Marconi sailed to the United States at the invitation of the New York Herald newspaper to cover the America's Cup races off Sandy Hook, NJ. The transmission was done aboard the SS Ponce, a passenger ship of the Porto Rico Line.[21] Marconi left for England on 8 November 1899 on the American Line's SS St. Paul, and he and his assistants installed wireless equipment aboard during the voyage. On 15 November the St. Paul became the first ocean liner to report her imminent return to Great Britain by wireless when Marconi's Royal Needles Hotel radio station contacted her sixty-six nautical miles off the English coast.

Transatlantic transmissions

Marconi watching associates raising the kite (a "Levitor" by B.F.S. Baden-Powell[22]) used to lift the antenna at St. John's, Newfoundland, December 1901

At the turn of the 20th century, Marconi began investigating the means to signal completely across the Atlantic, in order to compete with the transatlantic telegraph cables. Marconi established a wireless transmitting station at Marconi House, Rosslare Strand, Co. Wexford in 1901 to act as a link between Poldhu in Cornwall and Clifden in Co. Galway. He soon made the announcement that on 12 December 1901, using a 500-foot (150 m) kite-supported antenna for reception, the message was received at Signal Hill in St John's, Newfoundland (now part of Canada) signals transmitted by the company's new high-power station at Poldhu, Cornwall. The distance between the two points was about 2,200 miles (3,500 km). Heralded as a great scientific advance, there was—and continues to be—considerable skepticism about this claim. The exact wavelength used is not known, but it is fairly reliably determined to have been in the neighborhood of 350 meters. The tests took place at a time of day during which the entire transatlantic path was in daylight. We now know (although Marconi did not know then) that this was the worst possible choice. At this medium wavelength, long distance transmission in the daytime is not possible because of heavy absorption of the skywave in the ionosphere. It was not a blind test—Marconi knew in advance to listen for a repetitive signal of three clicks, signifying the Morse code letter S. The clicks were reported to have been heard faintly and sporadically. There was no independent confirmation of the reported reception, and the transmissions were difficult to distinguish from atmospheric noise. (A detailed technical review of Marconi's early transatlantic work appears in John S. Belrose's work of 1995.) The Poldhu transmitter was a two-stage circuit.[24][25]

Marconi operating apparatus similar to that used by him to transmit the first wireless signal across the Atlantic Ocean, 1901
Marconi caricatured by Spy for Vanity Fair, 1905

Feeling challenged by coherer-tape reception up to 1,550 miles (2,490 km), and audio reception up to 2,100 miles (3,400 km). The maximum distances were achieved at night, and these tests were the first to show that for mediumwave and longwave transmissions, radio signals travel much farther at night than in the day. During the daytime, signals had only been received up to about 700 miles (1,100 km), less than half of the distance claimed earlier at Newfoundland, where the transmissions had also taken place during the day. Because of this, Marconi had not fully confirmed the Newfoundland claims, although he did prove that radio signals could be sent for hundreds of kilometres, despite some scientists' belief they were essentially limited to line-of-sight distances.

On 17 December 1902, a transmission from the Marconi station in Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada, became the world's first radio message to cross the Atlantic from North America. In 1901, Marconi built a station near South Wellfleet, Massachusetts that on 18 January 1903 sent a message of greetings from Theodore Roosevelt, the President of the United States, to King Edward VII of the United Kingdom, marking the first transatlantic radio transmission originating in the United States. This station also was one of the first to receive the distress signals coming from the RMS Titanic. However, consistent transatlantic signalling was difficult to establish.

Marconi began to build high-powered stations on both sides of the Atlantic to communicate with ships at sea, in competition with other inventors. In 1904 a commercial service was established to transmit nightly news summaries to subscribing ships, which could incorporate them into their on-board newspapers. A regular transatlantic radio-telegraph service was finally begun on 17 October 1907[26][27] between Clifden Ireland and Glace Bay, but even after this the company struggled for many years to provide reliable communication to others.


The two radio operators aboard the RMS TitanicJack Phillips and Harold Bride—were not employed by the White Star Line, but by the Marconi International Marine Communication Company. After the sinking of the ocean liner on 15 April 1912, survivors were rescued by the RMS Carpathia of the Cunard Line.[28] Also employed by the Marconi Company was David Sarnoff, who would later head RCA. Wireless communications were reportedly maintained for 72 hours between Carpathia and Sarnoff,[29] but Sarnoff's involvement has been questioned by some modern historians. When Carpathia docked in New York, Marconi went aboard with a reporter from The New York Times to talk with Bride, the surviving operator.[28] On 18 June 1912, Marconi gave evidence to the Court of Inquiry into the loss of Titanic regarding the marine telegraphy's functions and the procedures for emergencies at sea.[30] Britain's postmaster-general summed up, referring to the Titanic disaster, "Those who have been saved, have been saved through one man, Mr. Marconi...and his marvelous invention."[31] Marconi was offered free passage on Titanic before she sank, but had taken Lusitania three days earlier. As his daughter Degna later explained, he had paperwork to do and preferred the public stenographer aboard that vessel.[32]

Continuing work

Over the years, the Marconi companies gained a reputation for being technically conservative, in particular by continuing to use inefficient spark-transmitter technology, which could only be used for radiotelegraph operations, long after it was apparent that the future of radio communication lay with continuous-wave transmissions, which were more efficient and could be used for audio transmissions. Somewhat belatedly, the company did begin significant work with continuous-wave equipment beginning in 1915, after the introduction of the oscillating vacuum tube (valve). In 1920, employing a vacuum tube transmitter, the New Street Works factory in Chelmsford was the location for the first entertainment radio broadcasts in the United Kingdom, featuring Dame Nellie Melba. In 1922 regular entertainment broadcasts commenced from the Marconi Research Centre at Great Baddow, forming the prelude to the BBC.

Later years

Marconi with his wife c. 1910

In 1914, Marconi was made a Senator in the Italian Senate and appointed Honorary Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order in the UK. During World War I, Italy joined the Allied side of the conflict, and Marconi was placed in charge of the Italian military's radio service. He attained the rank of lieutenant in the Italian Army and of commander in the Italian Navy. In 1929, he was made a marquess by King Victor Emmanuel III.

Marconi joined the Italian Fascist party in 1923. In 1930, Italian dictator Benito Mussolini appointed him President of the Royal Academy of Italy, which made Marconi a member of the Fascist Grand Council.

Marconi died in Rome on 20 July 1937 at age 63, following a series of heart attacks, and Italy held a state funeral for him. As a tribute, shops on the street where he lived were "Closed for national mourning".[34] In addition, at 6 pm the next day, the time designated for the funeral, all BBC transmitters and wireless Post Office transmitters in the British Isles observed two minutes of silence in his honor. The British Post Office also sent a message requesting that all broadcasting ships honor Marconi with two minutes of broadcasting silence as well.[34] His remains are housed in the Villa Griffone at Sasso Marconi, Emilia-Romagna, which assumed that name in his honour in 1938.[35][36]

In 1943, the Supreme Court of the United States handed down a decision on Marconi's radio patents restoring some of the prior patents of Oliver Lodge, John Stone Stone, and Nikola Tesla.[37][38] The decision was not about Marconi's original radio patents[39] and the court declared that their decision had no bearing on Marconi's claim as the first to achieve radio transmission, just that since Marconi's claim to certain patents were questionable, he could not claim infringement on those same patents.[40] (There are claims the high court was trying to nullify a World War I claim against the U.S. government by the Marconi Company via simply restoring the non-Marconi prior patent.)[37]

Personal life

American electrical engineer Alfred Norton Goldsmith and Marconi on 26 June 1922.

Marconi had a brother, Alfonso, and a stepbrother, Luigi.

On 16 March 1905, Marconi married the Hon. Beatrice O'Brien (1882–1976), a daughter of Edward O'Brien, 14th Baron Inchiquin, having met her in Poole in 1904.[41] They had three daughters, Degna (1908–1998), Gioia (1916–1996), and Lucia (born and died 1906), and a son, Giulio, 2nd Marchese Marconi (1910–1971).

In 1913, the Marconis returned to Italy and became part of Rome society. Beatrice served as a lady-in-waiting to Queen Elena. The Marconis divorced in 1924, and, at Marconi's request, the marriage was annulled on 27 April 1927, so he could remarry.[42] Beatrice Marconi married her second husband, Liborio Marignoli, Marchese di Montecorona, on 3 March 1924 and had a daughter, Flaminia.[43]

On 12 June 1927 (religious 15 June), Marconi married Maria Cristina Bezzi-Scali (1900–1994), only daughter of Francesco, Count Bezzi-Scali. They had one daughter, Maria Elettra Elena Anna (born 1930), who married Prince Carlo Giovannelli (born 1942) in 1966; they later divorced. For unexplained reasons, Marconi left his entire fortune to his second wife and their only child, and nothing to the children of his first marriage.[44]

Later in life, Marconi was an active Italian Fascist[45] and an apologist for their ideology and actions such as the attack by Italian forces in Ethiopia.

Marconi wanted to personally introduce in 1931 the first radio broadcast of a Pope, Pius XI, and did announce at the microphone: "With the help of God, who places so many mysterious forces of nature at man's disposal, I have been able to prepare this instrument which will give to the faithful of the entire world the joy of listening to the voice of the Holy Father".[46]

Legacy and honours

Honours and awards

  • In 1909, Marconi shared the Nobel Prize in Physics with Karl Braun for his contributions to radio communications.[2]
  • In 1918, he was awarded the Franklin Institute's Franklin Medal.
  • In 1929, he was made a marquess by King Victor Emmanuel III, thus becoming Marchese Marconi.
  • In 1931, he was awarded with John Scott Medal by wireless telegraphy
  • In 1977, Marconi was inducted into the National Broadcasters Hall of Fame.[47]
  • In 1988, the Radio Hall of Fame (Museum of Broadcast Communications, Chicago) inducted Marconi as a Pioneer (soon after the inception of its awards).[48]
  • In 1990, the Bank of Italy issued a 2000 lire banknote featuring his portrait on the front and on the back his accomplishments.[49]
  • In 2001, Great Britain released a commemorative British two pound coin celebrating the 100th anniversary of Marconi's first wireless communication.
  • Marconi's early experiments in wireless telegraphy were the subject of two IEEE Milestones; one in Switzerland in 2003[50] and most recently in Italy in 2011.[51]
  • In 2009, Italy issued a commemorative silver 5 coin honouring the centennial of Marconi's Nobel Prize.
  • In 2009, he was inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame.[52]
  • The Dutch radio academy bestows the Marconi Awards annually for outstanding radio programmes, presenters and stations.
  • The National Association of Broadcasters (US) bestows the annual NAB Marconi Radio Awards also for outstanding radio programs and stations.


  • A funerary monument to the effigy of Marconi can be seen in the Basilica of Santa Croce, Florence but his remains are in Sasso, near Bologna.
  • A statue of Gulgielmo Marconi stands in Church Square Park in Hoboken, NJ.
  • A sculpture devoted to Marconi stands in Washington, D.C.
  • The premier collection of Marconi artifacts was held by The General Electric Company, p.l.c. (GEC) of the United Kingdom which later renamed Marconi plc and Marconi Corporation plc. In December 2004 the extensive Marconi Collection, held at the former Marconi Research Centre at Great Baddow, Chelmsford, Essex UK was donated to the nation by the Company via the University of Oxford. This consisted of the BAFTA award-winning MarconiCalling website, some 250+ physical artifacts and the massive ephemera collection of papers, books, patents and many other items. The artifacts are now held by The Museum of the History of Science and the ephemera Archives by the nearby Bodleian Library. The latest release, following three years work at the Bodleian, is the Online Catalogue to the Marconi Archives, released in November 2008.
Guglielmo Marconi Memorial in Washington, D.C.
  • A granite obelisk stands on the clifftop at Poldhu, Cornwall near the site of Marconi's radio station, commemorating the first transatlantic transmission.

Places and organizations named after Marconi


Hong Kong


  • Marconi Avenue, Ballybunion
  • Marconi Park, Enniscorthy
  • Marconi House, Digges Ln, Dublin
  • Guglielmo Marconi Airport (IATA: BLQ – ICAO: LIPE), of Bologna, Italy, is named after Marconi, its native son.
  • "Guglielmo Marconi" University in Rome, Italy.(Università degli Studi "Guglielmo Marconi" di Roma).
  • Via Guglielmo Marconi in virtually all Italian towns and villages
  • Piazza Marconi in Cremona
  • Marconilaan (Marconi Avenue), Eindhoven
  • Marconiplein (Marconi Square), Rotterdam
United Kingdom
  • Marconi Road, Chelmsford, location of the New Street Works
  • Marconi Centre, Chelmsford
  • Marconi Gardens, Brentwood
  • Marconi Road, Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
  • Marconi Road, Leyton, London E10
  • Marconi House, Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Marconi Way, St. Albans, AL4

Middle East

  • Marconi Street in the city of Haifa.



North America

  • Guillermo Marconi Street, in Mexico City.
United States
  • Marconi Road in Kahuku, Hawaii, marks the entrance to the former Marconi Wireless Telegraph Station.
New Jersey
New York
  • Marconiville section of the town of Copiague
  • La Scuola D'Italia on New York City's Upper East Side
  • Marconi Boulevard in Rocky Point, New York; his original radio shack is found along that road at the Frank J. Carasiti Elementary School in Rocky Point.
  • Marconi Avenue in Ronkonkoma, New York.
Rhode Island
  • Piazza Guglielmo Marconi, northeast sector of the intersection of Atwood Avenue and Plainfield Street, Johnston, Rhode Island[54]

South America



British patents

  • British patent No. 12,039 (1897) "Improvements in Transmitting Electrical impulses and Signals, and in Apparatus therefor". Date of Application 2 June 1896; Complete Specification Left, 2 March 1897; Accepted, 2 July 1897 (later claimed by Oliver Lodge to contain his own ideas which he failed to patent).
  • British patent No. 7,777 (1900) "Improvements in Apparatus for Wireless Telegraphy". Date of Application 26 April 1900; Complete Specification Left, 25 February 1901; Accepted, 13 April 1901.
  • British patent No. 10245 (1902)
  • British patent No. 5113 (1904) "Improvements in Transmitters suitable for Wireless Telegraphy". Date of Application 1 March 1904; Complete Specification Left, 30 November 1904; Accepted, 19 January August 1905.
  • British patent No. 21640 (1904) "Improvements in Apparatus for Wireless Telegraphy". Date of Application 8 October 1904; Complete Specification Left, 6 July 1905; Accepted, 10 August 1905.
  • British patent No. 14788 (1904) "Improvements in or relating to Wireless Telegraphy". Date of Application 18 July 1905; Complete Specification Left, 23 January 1906; Accepted, 10 May 1906.

US patents

  • U.S. Patent 586,193 "Transmitting electrical signals", (using Ruhmkorff coil and Morse code key) filed December 1896, patented July 1897
  • U.S. Patent 624,516 "Apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 627,650 "Apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 647,007 "Apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 647,008 "Apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 647,009 "Apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 650,109 "Apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 650,110 "Apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 668,315 "Receiver for electrical oscillations".
  • U.S. Patent 760,463 "Wireless signaling system".
  • U.S. Patent 792,528 "Wireless telegraphy". Filed 13 October 1903; Issued 13, 1905.
  • U.S. Patent 676,332 "Apparatus for wireless telegraphy" (later practical version of system)
  • U.S. Patent 757,559 "Wireless telegraphy system". Filed 19 November 1901; Issued 19 April 1904.
  • U.S. Patent 760,463 "Wireless signaling system". Filed 10 September 1903; Issued 24 May 1904.
  • U.S. Patent 763,772 "Apparatus for wireless telegraphy" (Four tuned system; this innovation was predated by N. Tesla, O. Lodge, and J. S. Stone)
  • U.S. Patent 786,132 "Wireless telegraphy". Filed 13 October 1903
  • U.S. Patent 792,528 "Wireless telegraphy". Filed 13 October 1903; Issued 13 June 1905.
  • U.S. Patent 884,986 "Wireless telegraphy". Filed 28 November 1902; Issued 14 April 1908.
  • U.S. Patent 884,987 "Wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 884,988 "Detecting electrical oscillations". Filed 2 February 1903; Issued 14 April 1908.
  • U.S. Patent 884,989 "Wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 935,381 "Transmitting apparatus for wireless telegraphy". Filed 10 April 1908; Issued 28 September 1909.
  • U.S. Patent 935,382 "Apparatus for wireless telegraphy".
  • U.S. Patent 935,383 "Apparatus for wireless telegraphy". Filed 10 April 1908; Issued 28 September 1909.
  • U.S. Patent 954,640 "Apparatus for wireless telegraphy". Filed 31 March 1909; Issued 12 April 1910.
  • U.S. Patent 997,308 "Transmitting apparatus for wireless telegraphy". Filed 15 July 1910; Issued 11 July 1911.
  • U.S. Patent 1,102,990 "Means for generating alternating electric currents". Filed 27 January 1914; Issued 7 July 1914.
  • U.S. Patent 1,148,521 "Transmitter for wireless telegraphy". Filed 20 July 1908.
  • U.S. Patent 1,226,099 "Transmitting apparatus for use in wireless telegraphy and telephony". Filed 31 December 1913; Issued 15 May 1917.
  • U.S. Patent 1,271,190 "Wireless telegraph transmitter".
  • U.S. Patent 1,377,722 "Electric accumulator". Filed 9 March 1918
  • U.S. Patent 1,148,521 "Transmitter for wireless telegraphy". Filed 20 July 1908; Issued 3 August 1915.
  • U.S. Patent 1,981,058 "Thermionic valve". Filed 14 October 1926; Issued 20 November 1934.

Reissued (US)

  • U.S. Patent RE11,913 "Transmitting electrical impulses and signals and in apparatus, there-for". Filed 1 April 1901; Issued 4 June 1901.

See also


  1. ^ Bondyopadhyay, Prebir K. (1995). "25th European Microwave Conference, 1995". p. 879.  
  2. ^ a b "Guglielmo Marconi: The Nobel Prize in Physics 1909"
  3. ^ Bondyopadhyay, P.K. (1998). "Sir J.C. Bose diode detector received Marconi's first transatlantic wireless signal of December 1901 (the 'Italian Navy Coherer' Scandal Revisited)". Proceedings of the IEEE 86: 259.  
  4. ^ Roy, Amit (8 December 2008). "Cambridge 'pioneer' honour for Bose". The Telegraph ( 
  5. ^ Icons of invention: the makers of the modern world from Gutenberg to Gates. ABC-CLIO. Retrieved 7 August 2011. 
  6. ^ Ingenious Ireland: A County-by-County Exploration of the Mysteries and Marvels of the Ingenious Irish. Simon and Schuster. Retrieved 7 August 2011. 
  7. ^ Atti della Accademia di scienze, lettere e arti di Palermo: Scienze, Presso l'accademia, 1974, p. 11.
  8. ^ Marconi: the Irish connection, Michael Sexton, Four Courts Press, 2005
  9. ^ "Guglielmo Marconi and Early Systems of Wireless Communication" (PDF). Retrieved 15 February 2014. 
  10. ^  
  11. ^ Corradi Giuliano, "Guglielmo Marconi," Guglielmo Marconi. Tracce di un genio nel Tigullio, 2009.
  12. ^ Marconi delineated his 1895 apparatus in his Nobel Award speech. See: Marconi, "Wireless Telegraphic Communication: Nobel Lecture, 11 December 1909." Nobel Lectures. Physics 1901–1921. Amsterdam: Elsevier Publishing Company, 1967: 196–222. p. 198.
  13. ^ Guglielmo Marconi, padre della radio. Retrieved on 12 July 2012.
  14. ^ Marconi, "Wireless Telegraphic Communication: Nobel Lecture, 11 December 1909." Nobel Lectures. Physics 1901–1921. Amsterdam: Elsevier Publishing Company, 1967: 196–222. p. 206.
  15. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 1909". 
  16. ^ Luigi Solari, Guglielmo Marconi e la Marina Militare Italiana, Rivista Marittima, febbraio 1948
  17. ^ Alfred Thomas Story, The Story of Wireless Telegraphy. 1904. p. 58.
  18. ^ Plaque #2389 on Open Plaques.
  19. ^ "Flickr Photo". 
  20. ^ BBC Wales, Marconi's Waves at the Wayback Machine (archived January 20, 2007)
  21. ^ Helgesen, Henry N. "Wireless Goes to Sea: Marconi's Radio and SS Ponce". Sea History (Spring 2008): 122. 
  22. ^ First Atlantic Ocean crossing by a wireless signal. Retrieved on 12 July 2012.
  23. ^ Page, Walter Hines, and Arthur Wilson Page, The World's Work. Doubleday, Page & Company, 1908. p. 9625
  24. ^ "Marconi and the History of Radio". IEEE Antennas and Propagation Magazine 46 (2): 130. 2004.  
  25. ^ John S. Belrose, "Fessenden and Marconi: Their Differing Technologies and Transatlantic Experiments During the First Decade of this Century". International Conference on 100 Years of Radio – 5–7 September 1995.
  26. ^ "The Clifden Station of the Marconi Wireless Telegraph System". Scientific American. 23 November 1907. 
  27. ^ Second Test of the Marconi Over-Ocean Wireless System Proved Entirely Successful. Sydney Daily Post. 24 October 1907.
  28. ^ a b John P. Eaton & Charles A. Haas Titanic – Triumph and Tragedy, A Chronicle in Words and Pictures. 1994 ISBN 0857330241.
  29. ^ Herron, Edward A. (1969). Miracle of the Air Waves: A History of Radio. Messner.  
  30. ^ Court of Inquiry Loss of the S.S. Titanic 1912
  31. ^ "Titanic's Wireless Connection". Wireless History Foundation. April 2012. Retrieved 7 October 2013. 
  32. ^ Greg Daugherty (March 2012). "Seven Famous People Who Missed the Titanic". Smithsonian Magazine. 
  33. ^ William John Baker, History Of The Marconi Company 1874–1965. 1972. p. 296
  34. ^ a b "Radio falls silent for death of Marconi"
  35. ^
  36. ^ Guglielmo Marconi at Find a Grave
  37. ^ a b Jean-Michel Redouté, Michiel Steyaert, EMC of Analog Integrated Circuits, page 3. Retrieved 18 March 2013. 
  38. ^ Charles T. Meadow, Making Connections: Communication through the Ages, Scarecrow Press 2002, page 193. Retrieved 15 February 2014. 
  39. ^ "Thomas H. White, Nikola Tesla: The Guy Who DIDN'T "Invent Radio",, 1 November 2012". Retrieved 15 February 2014. 
  40. ^ Robert Sobot, Wireless Communication Electronics:Introduction to RF Circuits and Design Techniques, page 4. 18 February 2012. Retrieved 18 March 2013. 
  41. ^ Padfield, Mark. "Beatrice O'Brien". Marconi Calling. 
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  43. ^ Kelly's Handbook to the Titled, Landed, and Official Classes (Kelly's, 1969), p. 623
  44. ^ Degna Marconi, My Father, Marconi (Guernica Editions, 2001), p. 232 ISBN 1550711512.
  45. ^, "Guglielmo Marconi: radio star", 2001
  46. ^ "80 Years of Vatican Radio, Pope Pius XI and Marconi. .. and Father Jozef Murgas?". Saint Benedict Center. 
  47. ^ National Broadcasters Hall of Fame. Accessed 10 February 2009
  48. ^ "Pioneer: Guglielmo Marconi". Retrieved 30 May 2012. 
  49. ^ Italy 2000 lira banknote (1990) Banknote Museum ( Retrieved on 2013-03-17.
  50. ^ "Milestones:Marconi's Early Wireless Experiments, 1895". IEEE Global History Network. IEEE. Retrieved 29 July 2011. 
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  52. ^ New Jersey to Bon Jovi: You Give Us a Good Name. (2 February 2009).
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  54. ^ 01-S 879 R.I. State Senate act, 25 April 2001 Retrieved 23 August 2010

Further reading

Relatives and company publications
  • Bussey, Gordon, Marconi's Atlantic Leap, Marconi Communications, 2000. ISBN 0-9538967-0-6
  • Isted, G.A., Guglielmo Marconi and the History of Radio – Part I, General Electric Company, p.l.c., GEC Review, Volume 7, No. 1, p45, 1991, ISSN 0267 9337
  • Isted, G.A., Guglielmo Marconi and the History of Radio – Part II, General Electric Company, p.l.c., GEC Review, Volume 7, No. 2, p110, 1991, ISSN 0267 9337
  • Marconi, Degna, My Father, Marconi, James Lorimer & Co, 1982. ISBN 0-919511-14-7 (Italian version): Marconi, mio padre, Di Renzo Editore, 2008, ISBN 88-8323-206-2
  • Marconi's Wireless Telegraph Company, Year book of wireless telegraphy and telephony, London: Published for the Marconi Press Agency Ltd., by the St. Catherine Press / Wireless Press. LCCN 14017875 sn 86035439
  • Simons, R.W., Guglielmo Marconi and Early Systems of Wireless Communication, General Electric Company, p.l.c., GEC Review, Volume 11, No. 1, p37, 1996, ISSN 0267 9337
  • Ahern, Steve (ed), Making Radio (2nd Edition) Allen & Unwin, Sydney, 2006 ISBN 9781741149128.
  • Aitken, Hugh G. J., Syntony and Spark: The Origins of Radio, New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1976. ISBN 0-471-01816-3
  • Aitken, Hugh G. J., The Continuous Wave: Technology and American Radio, 1900–1932, Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1985. ISBN 0-691-08376-2.
  • Anderson, Leland I., Priority in the Invention of Radio – Tesla vs. Marconi
  • Baker, W. J., A History of the Marconi Company, 1970.
  • Brodsky, Ira. "The History of Wireless: How Creative Minds Produced Technology for the Masses" (Telescope Books, 2008)
  • Cheney, Margaret, "Tesla: Man Out of Time" Laurel Publishing, 1981. Chapter 7, esp pp 69, re: published lectures of Tesla in 1893, copied by Marconi.
  • Clark, Paddy, "Marconi's Irish Connections Recalled," published in ";100 Years of Radio," IEE Conference Publication 411, 1995.
  • Coe, Douglas and Kreigh Collins (ills), Marconi, pioneer of radio, New York, J. Messner, Inc., 1943. LCCN 43010048
  • Garratt, G. R. M., The early history of radio: from Faraday to Marconi, London, Institution of Electrical Engineers in association with the Science Museum, History of technology series, 1994. ISBN 0-85296-845-0 LCCN gb 94011611
  • Geddes, Keith, Guglielmo Marconi, 1874–1937, London : H.M.S.O., A Science Museum booklet, 1974. ISBN 0-11-290198-0 LCCN 75329825 (ed. Obtainable in the U.S.A. from Pendragon House Inc., Palo Alto, California.)
  • Hancock, Harry Edgar, Wireless at sea; the first fifty years: A history of the progress and development of marine wireless communications written to commemorate the jubilee of the Marconi International Marine Communication Company, Limited, Chelmsford, Eng., Marconi International Marine Communication Co., 1950. LCCN 51040529 /L
  • Hong, Sungook, Wireless: From Marconi’s Black-Box to the Audio, Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2001. ISBN 0-262-08298-5.
  • Hughes, Michael and Bosworth, Katherine, Titanic Calling : Wireless Communications During the Great Disaster, Oxford, The Bodleian Library, 2012, ISBN 978-1-85124-377-8
  • Janniello, Maria Grace, Monteleone, Franco and Paoloni, Giovanni (eds) (1996), One hundred years of radio: From Marconi to the future of the telecommunications. Catalogue of the extension, Venice: Marsilio.
  • Jolly, W. P., Marconi, 1972.
  • Larson, Erik, Thunderstruck, New York: Crown Publishers, 2006. ISBN 1-4000-8066-5 A comparison of the lives of Hawley Harvey Crippen and Marconi. Crippen was a murderer whose Transatlantic escape was foiled by the new invention of shipboard radio.
  • MacLeod, Mary K., Marconi: The Canada Years – 1902–1946, Halifax, Nova Scotia: Nimbus Publishing Limited, 1992, ISBN 1551093308
  • Masini, Giancarlo, Guglielmo Marconi, Turin: Turinese typographical-publishing union, 1975. LCCN 77472455 (ed. Contains 32 tables outside of the text)
  • Mason, H. B. (1908). Encyclopaedia of ships and shipping, Wireless Telegraphy. London: Shipping Encyclopaedia. 1908.
  • Perry, Lawrence (1902). "Commercial Wireless Telegraphy".  
  • Stone, Ellery W., Elements of Radiotelegraphy
  • Weightman, Gavin, Signor Marconi's magic box: the most remarkable invention of the 19th century & the amateur inventor whose genius sparked a revolution, 1st Da Capo Press ed., Cambridge, MA : Da Capo Press, 2003. ISBN 0-306-81275-4
  • Winkler, Jonathan Reed. Nexus: Strategic Communications and American Security in World War I. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2008). Account of rivalry between Marconi's firm and the U.S. government during World War I.

External links

General achievements
  • Nobel Prize: Guglielmo Marconi biography
  • Marconi il 5 marzo 1896, presenta a Londra la prima richiesta provvisoria di brevetto, col numero 5028 e col titolo "Miglioramenti nella telegrafia e relativi apparati" (Great Britain and France between 1896 and 1924)
  • List of British and French patents (1896–1924) The first patent application number 5028 of 5 March 1896 (Provisional deprivation)
Foundations and academics
  • University of Oxford Introduction to the Online Catalogue of the Marconi Collection
  • University of Oxford Online Catalogue of the Marconi Archives
  • Guglielmo Marconi Foundation, Pontecchio Marconi, Bologna, Italy
  • Galileo Legacy Foundation: pictures of the Dedication of the Guglielmo Marconi Square, Johnston RI USA Dedication Photos
  • History of Marconi House, Marconi House, Strand / Aldwych, London.
Multimedia and books
  • MarconiCalling – The Life, Science and Achievements of Guglielmo Marconi, part of the Marconi Collection at the University of Oxford
  • Canadian Heritage Minute featuring Marconi
  • Guglielmo Marconi documentary, narrated by Walter Cronkite
  • Signor Marconi's Magic BoxReview of
Transatlantic "signals" and radio
  • Robert (Bob) White, Guglielmo Marconi – Aerial Assistance with a Kite. Bridging the Atlantic By Wireless Signal – 12 December 1901. Kiting, The Journal of the American Kitefliers Association. Vol. 23, Issue 5 – Winter 2002. November 2001
  • Faking the Waves, 1901
  • Marconi and "wireless telegraphy" using kites
Keys and "signals"
  • Sparks Telegraph Key Review An exhaustive listing of wireless telegraph key manufacturers including photos of most Marconi keys
  • United States Senate Inquiry into the Titanic disaster – Testimony of Guglielmo Marconi
Priority of invention

vs Tesla

  • PBS: Marconi and Tesla: Who invented radio?
  • U.S. Supreme Court, "Marconi Wireless Telegraph co. of America v. United States". 320 U.S. 1. Nos. 369, 373. Argued 9–12 April 1943. Decided 21 June 1943.
  • 21st Century Books: Priority in the Invention of Radio – Tesla vs. Marconi
  • Information about Marconi and his yacht Elettra
  • I diari di laboratorio di Guglielmo Marconi (The diaries of laboratory Guglielmo Marconi.)
  • Comitato Guglielmo Marconi International, Bologna, Italy (Marconi's voice)
  • August 1914 photo article on Marconi Belmar station in Wall, NJ, InfoAge. (See also, Marconi Period of Significance Historic Buildings.)
  • Marconi, Guglielmo: Statue north of Meridian Hill Park in Washington, D.C. by Attilio Piccirilli
  • Guglielmo Marconi, 2000 Italian Lire (1990)
Academic offices
Preceded by
Jan Smuts
Rector of the University of St Andrews
Succeeded by
Robert MacGregor Mitchell
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